In a normal year, we announce the annual PleinAir Salon winners under bright lights on a big stage in front of a cheering crowd at the Plein Air Convention and Expo (PACE). Of course, PACE was postponed and then cancelled due to things beyond our control, but we still had thousands of dollars to give away in prizes.

What could we do? Go online! On September 25, Eric Rhoads, Kelly Kane, and I hosted the 9th Annual PleinAir Salon awards live online (watch here), where we proudly announced the top winners this year. The bonus? The audience size was (and is) unlimited – you can still be a part when you watch from home!

Eric Rhoads, Publisher; Cherie Dawn Haas, Editor of Plein Air Today; and Kelly Kane, Editor-in-Chief of Plein Air Magazine

On behalf of our team and all of the judges, congratulations to the following winners of the 9th Annual PleinAir Salon!

Grand Prize: Dave Santillanes, “High Places”

Dave Santillanes, "High Places," oil, 30 x 40 in.
Dave Santillanes, “High Places,” oil, 30 x 40 in.
Dave Santillanes lovingly thanked his wife, Heather, when he found out his winning painting won the grand prize: “She does everything.”

Second Place: Nicolas Coleman, “Dog Valley Camp”

Nicholas Coleman, "Dog Valley Camp," oil, 18 x 24 in.
Nicholas Coleman, “Dog Valley Camp,” oil, 18 x 24 in.

Third Place: Jennifer McChristian, “Late Night Dim Sum”

Jennifer McChristian, "Late Night Dim Sum," oil, 16 x 20 in.
Jennifer McChristian, “Late Night Dim Sum,” oil, 16 x 20 in.

Honorable Mention: Kyle Ma, “Sunlit Pastures”

PleinAir Salon art competition - OutdoorPainter.com
Kyle Ma, “Sunlit Pastures,” oil, 36 x 48 in.

Honorable Mention: Ben Bauer, “Buffalo County Nordic Star”

Ben Bauer, "Buffalo County Nordic Star," oil, 32 x 36 in.
Ben Bauer, “Buffalo County Nordic Star,” oil, 32 x 36 in.

Honorable Mention: Christine Lashley, “Twilight, Libby Hill”

PleinAir Salon - Christine Lashley - OutdoorPainter.om
Christine Lashley, “Twilight, Libby Hill,” oil, 24 x 18 in.

If you missed the live version, watch the PleinAir Salon awards here, where you can comment and personally congratulate the winning artists >>>

How does the PleinAir Salon work?

The PleinAir Salon is a monthly art competition with 19 categories you can enter, including:
Acrylic – Oil – Pastel – Watercolor & Gouache – Floral – Landscape – Animals & Birds – Nocturne/Sunrise/Sunset – Figure & Portrait – Outdoor Still Life – Water – Western – Drawing & Sketches – Plein Air Work Only – Buildings – Vehicles – Student – Artist Under 30 – Artist Over 65

You can enter as many paintings as you want in as many categories as you want. We award $1000 in cash prizes to the first, second and third place winners of every monthly competition. All 22 winners from every month are entered into the running for the Grand Prize in the Annual Competition held every spring.

We have gallery professionals, top artists, and museum directors as judges of the PleinAir Salon. People like Jean Stern, Director Emeritus of the Irvine Museum; Helena Fox, owner of Helena Fox Gallery; Seth Hopkins, Executive Director of the Booth Western Art Museum, and John Manzari, the Director of the Meyer Gallery.

We award $1000 in cash prizes to the first, second and third place winners of every monthly competition. All 22 winners from every month are entered into the running for the Grand Prize in the Annual Competition held every spring, where we award $21,000. The Grand Prize Winner receives a big check for $15,000 and will be featured on the cover of PleinAir magazine.

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